Downtown Mobile businesses prioritizing safety after horrific shooting

With the holidays ramping up, more people will be heading downtown.
Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 10:45 PM CST
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - In the wake of a horrific shooting in the heart of downtown Mobile, surrounding businesses aren’t taking any chances with safety.

Police say a gunman opened fire inside Paparazzi nightclub on Dauphin Street, four people were shot.

An arrest was made late Wednesday night.

28-year-old John McCarroll is charged with four counts of 1st-degree assault.

Even though the shooting happened inside Paparazzi nearby businesses say it affects them as well.

They want to emphasize that isolated incidents like that shouldn’t keep people from feeling safe downtown.

With the holidays ramping up, more people will be heading downtown.

Business owners want their customers to not only have a good time but feel safe doing it.

That wasn’t the case last weekend when police say someone pulled out a gun and started shooting inside the club after 2 am.

MPD arrested 28-year-old McCarroll, who claims he didn’t do it.

“I ain’t do that s**t man. They just needed somebody to blame. I ain’t open fire and shoot no gun. They just needed somebody to blame,” McCarroll said.

That crime raises the question of how someone would be able to bring a gun inside.

Carol Hunter with the Downtown Mobile Alliance says it’s up to businesses how they want to handle it.

“They make those decisions. If they are not wanding customers when they come in I think they have to expect that some of their customers may show up with weapons,” Hunter said.

Hunter says there are “safety ambassadors” who patrol downtown along with MPD but have no legal authority to make arrests.

An assistant manager at Squid Ink, which is also located on Dauphin Street, says they’re also feeling the repercussions of Saturday’s shooting.

Brian Davidson says those isolated events shouldn’t deter people from coming out.

“We definitely felt the impact of these recent events. What’s happening in these establishments so far down the road is not necessarily happening in every single one,” Davidson said. “I would definitely make sure that you do your research.”

Police say they are still investigating that shooting and are looking for more suspects.

A fourth victim still remains in critical condition.


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